What do you think has been the biggest influence in becoming happy with who you are?

Accepting that I have a limited control over others around me. I cannot always make people understand or agree with me, can’t understand or determine what they’re going to do or what their reaction is going to be. It’s been important to not make what others think or do more important than my own actions. The more it affects you, and what or why you do things the easier it is to lose sight. The world is ours to react to and in. We might as well do this often and honestly but remember it is not necessary to react to everything, either.

 

How do you see yourself in the world?

Well I definitely don’t see myself the way others do. I think in some cases I hold myself in higher esteem and others in lower. I know that I am capable of making positive change. I think I do positive things for the communities I’m involved in. I think I could do better and I think some people know that as well, and others are more understanding – less expecting of me. I can’t ever shake the feeling off having some really important purpose in my life but also the feeling of being lost in attaining it.

 

What is your fatal flaw?

I have many. First, I act like everything is conversation. Arguments, discussions, sessions. I don’t process them on their importance – I take the information and catalogue it but have difficulty going “oh this is important I should take this in and do something with it” and instead go “okay we talked about this and now I have this information”. Second, I’m scared of being loved by the wrong person so whenever a good person comes along I scrutinize them and find their flaws as if that’s reason they can’t love me. Like it’s a privilege and not a task. What is a privilege is to BE loved by me.  And why I am so willing to give away what is good to those I don’t think deserve what I have to offer is beyond me.  Maybe the reality is I don’t think I deserve anyone. I always feel like I don’t need anyone so when I’m living my life I forget that people may need me. Third, I find it difficult to find middle ground – a place between on and off. I don’t like getting to know people – I like knowing them. I need to feel everything to it’s fullest extent or be completely void of emotion.

Do you think by making honest decisions in your life, you’ve made positive changes in the world? (what has making honest decisions in your life done for the world/your world/ what does it mean to make an honest decision)

An honest decision for me – while thought and logic are important to making good decisions – is one that follows your intuition. The best experiences and the choices I’m most proud of I followed my gut the whole way and it was worth it. Where i’ve found the most influence and inspiration is where intuition has led me. The magic I’s. I don’t know if this holds true for everyone, I’m willing to bet it doesn’t and I would even be as bold to say that I don’t think everyone should follow their intuition (but I say this because I don’t think there is a lot of knowledge and understanding between impulse and intuition) but I think that making honest decisions (however they are made) adds to the world even if in a karmic way.

What is the most important thing women do for each other?

The most important thing women do for each other is create spaces where we feel at home with one another. Whether physically, emotionally, spiritually; we support, protect, guide one another, and inspire one another. That being said, I don’t think women are alone in doing these things.

What are the defining traits of a woman?

The women I know are all hard workers. Motivation is key, and they are blessed to be able to find it on even the hardest days. They put effort into supporting good things already in place, and letting what they build be a part of a whole better community. Resilient, adaptive, creative, balancing. Women come together to make phenomenal things. Our feats are big, small, and altogether insurmountable.

 

What are your defining traits?

I’m head on. Well spoken. Erratic. Honest. Realistic. I do not like taking, I like to reciprocate. I would rather observe and absorb than contribute in the moment. I think I put a lot of energy into trying to charm people to like me – even just on the surface – because it’s easier to have people who don’t really know me but like me than to have people who do really know me and understand me. For me, I don’t know if I necessarily LIKE the people I love. I think once you get to know a person to a certain point you surpass this because it doesn’t matter – you understand a part of them, how they work. And understanding is more powerful than attraction in any kind of relationship. But being understood takes time and effort and it’s exhausting. So I avoid that, and on the surface am sweet and charming which works in every day social situations – and this is tiring too but I think it’s easier when you don’t care about the people to not have them care about you either. So I guess that also makes me superficial, or a liar, or maybe just human. I don’t know what this trait is. For me it’s a coping mechanism, and I think coping mechanisms and all of the different ones I have are a huge part of what makes me who I am.

What do you wish you were more of?

I wish I was more gentle. I feel like im so harsh. That it’s part of my unrefined charm or some bullshit, you know? I wish I was more thoughtful of the people I should be thoughtful of. Because I am a thoughtful person, just sometimes I display it more to the people who don’t necessarily deserve it compared to what the people who do deserve it lack in what they get after. I wish I believed in my full potential, or was able to visualize it. I guess I can’t because I don’t know if I’ll really be able to push myself to achieve these things. Like I know I have it in me but will I do it regardless. I sometimes wish I needed people more. Like I fear that I’ll end up alone because I treat myself better than anyone else does. I am the queen of my life.

How would you describe your perspective of the world?

Romantic. Blue. That shade of peach that the sky is when its fading into twilight. It’s all in transition. I want to compartmentalize everything, catalog it like it will last and matter for much longer than my own relevance. I am constantly living in my own day dream about how the world is to me, as ignorant as I can be to the bad because it hurts too much to immerge myself in reality on a regular basis. But I turn these perspectives into reality on paper so maybe my perspective of the world is really just a net that catches everything between what the world really is and how I want it to be.

What’s the worst thing the media has done for you?

The worst thing the media has done is ruined my idea of what I’m supposed to be. That I’m supposed to be doing a certain thing at a certain time in my life with a specific person or be a specific person. It’s always diluting me with these ideas that what I’m doing isn’t as good as what I “should” be doing. That others aren’t doing enough/good enough. It’s created this system of “at this age you should be doing this” which is why I get so many comments about being mature for my age or accomplished. Accomplishment is relevant to the goals of the individual, and we forget what we’re all capable of but also that others people paces may be slower or faster and they too are destined for their own measurement of greatness

What’s the best thing the media has done for you?

Made me realize I’m not alone. There are others out there who understand me and who I can relate to. Social Media has done this and I’m so thankful that I can share what I’m creating or thinking and get reactions and support; for creating spaces where I have been introduced to all that women have done, and all that is the reason I’m doing this right now.

If you could change something in your past what would it be? Why? How do you think it would change things now?

I think there are things that I want to want to change but realistically, if given the opportunity, I don’t think there is anything that I would. It’s too hard to tell what outcomes the future holds. What different paths we may all take. I’m happy with what is happening now, regardless of the pain and hurt in the past. It’s all given me strength and virtues necessary to have gotten me through to where I am now. A lot of my art, and my identity with art would be completely altered. Who can tell how that would affect things. Maybe for better, maybe for worse. Honestly I don’t feel like it would have been for the better of things in the bigger picture; in how I see things now. I don’t want to be the person I was and would be without all that’s happened.

Advice you would have given yourself in the past:

Follow your gut. Not your head or your heart.

Advice you think you will need in the future:

Stay focused. Don’t lose sight of your own projects in sake of “maintaining” your life.

Advice you would give yourself now:

Keep reaching, keep pushing. I know what I’m capable of.

What are, in your opinion, the most important things to life? How have you achieved or are trying to achieve these things?

Realizing what family means to you, and who in your life fulfills these requirements. Always seeking what makes you happy, and ways to work towards that. Understanding satisfaction should be the doorway to another goal. Figuring out who you want to be is important; trying to remind yourself everyday that you can be that person and making decisions and actions based around being that person (I always act like theres someone else around). Not getting caught up in the medias interpretation of who you are/what you should be/what you should be doing, but instead finding the person you want to be and letting the power of that knowledge push and guide you to be that person.

Do you feel like you know what you’re doing/that you have a path?

Hahahahaa, no fucking way I don’t. I’m a 19 year old sous chef (now server) with no training, no post secondary, I have no idea what I’m doing or how to do what I really want, but I’m trying. I’m meandering my way through life and trying to make the best out of what’s presented to me, or what I find in each situation I’m put in. And I’m happy with how much I’m able to really implement what I want in my life. How eventually, after wanting something for so long and working towards it for so long you can suddenly have it. The universe grants you with the perfect opportunity. Maybe it’s good karma. Maybe it’s life always testing us to follow our guts, but also to make our own fates. It’s crazy. But it’s also great. I don’t want to know what I’m doing, really.

Have you always known what you wanted to do?

I’ve always known I wanted to be a writer. Above anything else. And I’ve always known I’ve wanted to do things but never anything specific. There’s been a broad spectrum of occupations that I’ve wished to dabble in. Floristry, photography, stunt driving, competitive diver. I’ve gone all over the map, and I probably always will. I know that I’ll never be satisfied trying to fulfill one dream and that no matter where I find myself in life there will likely be something that motivates and inspires me.  All I think I know now is that I feel very greatly that I have a grander purpose. I’m meant to do something worthy of an increment of greatness. Even to my own satisfactions extent.

 

Whats been the most challenging obstacle to over come?

My own negativity.  It’s easy to believe you won’t get anywhere, won’t be able to manage making it in your own dreams or that you’ll fail. That it will be disappointing. That you will put so much effort in and learn you’ve over estimated your capabilities greatly. There’s always that fear there. But making that fear relevant doesn’t have to happen. It just comes down to that I have to try just as hard to not give into the contractions of my fear that it took to make them. But life has a good way of working out, I find. If you’re willing to do a bit of searching as well.

What inspires you/ Where do you find inspiration?

Everything. Floors inspire me sometimes. I find inspiration in the way the sounds on the street come together. In light coming through a passing streetcar window. In a certain temperature or almost slipping on ice. Maybe I’m easily amused. Maybe I over compensate how great things really are with how excited I am about them. It’s hard to say.

What do you see for the future? How would you like to be a part of it?

I see big things for my future. How I’m going to get there, I don’t know. But I have a good feeling about all of it. I have a feeling that I have the dreams I do for a reason. Nothing is out of reach.

What is your greatest personal achievement?

It’ll be different on any given day. Sometimes it’s that I got through high school. Sometimes it’s that I ate a breakfast that could have fed 3 – or that I ate breakfast at all. Sometimes it’s my writing or my ability to stay (read:get back to being) ambitious. We all have things we’re proud of. Things that we hold dear to us and try to understand as parts of ourselves. I think first you have to look at what an achievement is, and then look at what that persons done in the scale of their life and what they plan on doing. So in a way, it’s everything I’ve ever done. It’s all the little and big steps I take every day. Some times it’s the lack of steps I take. Regardless of what it is, what it was, I think the ability to find something to be proud of – a moment in every day to be happy even if for just a second, is my greatest personal achievement.

Would you consider yourself successful or inspiring?

I don’t know. I think it would depend. I mean looking at myself as a person I don’t feel very inspired, but looking at myself as the view of that I’m a 19 year old girl with my own apartment, a job, ambitions, skills, and who is fulfilled socially, then yeah maybe. I know people older than me who haven’t done as much of the “life skills” stuff as I have. But it’s always going to be in the eye of the beholder. I think what matters is I’m inspired enough by the outcome of past endeavours that I am motivated to keep moving forward with them. And I think it’s also important to know that regardless of my ability to affect myself, I have affected others positively and even if that doesn’t make me successful or inspiring it gives me the hope that I can be – on a large or small scale.

Who would you like to see celebrated?

Every woman who I’ve looked at, and been inspired to be a better version of myself as a result of their own personal actions/choices. Perpetuating self health and indulgence and care is so important. We should always be striving to push ourselves, but also others forward. However our actions may positively reinforce this in others, it is detrimental to the succession of success that we keep up our own self care in the interest of others. Everyone inspiring others deserves celebration.

What does your work mean for you? What does it embody?

My work to me is an expression of what I’ve experienced. An essence of a memory or version of reality. It’s embodies my experiences, and displays my own view of the world. Not only my own experiences, but also those of a generation. I feel connected; a resonation with and relation to those which I have shared these feelings or experiences with. Words for me are more than just a method or means. They are magic. I think that’s what my work means for me. It’s trying to capture the importance, relevance, and need for magic in all of it’s forms.

What does faith mean to you? Do you have a faith? (i.e. a religion, or something you believe in like karma)

Faith to me is simply something to believe in. What it is, is different. I believe in astrology and karma, i have faith in these things being what they are to get me through life.

Two years ago from now where did you think you would be? How does that differ from where you are now?

I have no idea where I thought I would be two years ago. A year ago I was dreaming I would be here, and now I think I’m just more comfortable – coming closer to my ideal. I’m in an apartment that I love. I have a job I love, I’m always learning and improving. trying to remember to take things slowly, because life is better if it isn’t rushed, and everything is better when it’s done with care. So I am learning to take care and that differs because a year ago I didn’t know what lessons I would be learning, I’m also trying to not look into the future too much because every day brings so much more opportunity than I imagined and reshapes my apparent course.

Where do you think you will be in another year?

I really couldn’t say. Hopefully still with permanent residence in this apartment, doing more with herHABITAT, will have experienced more travel and love, have been published. It’s hard to say, I don’t think I even know what I want for myself in a year let alone to say what it will look like to be there. Like I said before I’m not trying to look too far ahead and just live in the present.

What, in your opinion, are important values to have in todays society?

A sense of individuality, a good judge of character, patience, smart work as well as hard work, honesty.

What values do you think society promotes?

Good/appealing/interesting aesthetic. It’s about how your life looks.

What are your own values?

Honesty, self-care, not taking life or anyone in it too seriously, being passionate about what you’re doing and doing things you’re passionate about.

Are you who you want to be? Who is that person?

No, but I am who I used to want to be. Or at least parts of me are. Which means that not only am I actively changing, I’m doing it consciously towards a person I want to be. And as I reach that, I dream further for myself. I’ll never be exactly who I want to be because I want to always be improving.

That person is someone who takes her own personal goals seriously, who actively performs based on her own life and needs first. Who is kind, gentle, and open. A person who is not only forgiving, but has forgiven. These are the things in myself I am working towards right now, and there will be much more to come. And there is much that I already am.

What has been the best learning experience for you?

Getting to know myself. I guess it started when I started CBT and re-learned how to think. I discovered that I could control my thoughts as much as they could control me, and through that my life. I’ve since been on a long road of continuing self awareness and improvement. I definitely have relapses, but even those hard moments show me how far I’ve come in who I am. The world is a much more comfortable place to be in since, I see it now as an opportunity for me to change things as well as a place to be changed. The golden rule for me is to embrace as much of the change as I can.

Do you have any memories that “haunt” you? What are they? Why do you think you’re holding onto them?

So many things. Some of them are funny like the time I kept pronouncing pseudo “sway-do” and no one knew what I was talking about and I always think about how those people probably think I’m dumb or crazy when it reality they don’t remember it at all. There are little things, small instances that eat away at me for whatever reason, some of them having happened a decade ago. I can’t say why I’m holding onto them – maybe because I’ve never really talked about them. I think sometimes when you let go of things you lose them, and maybe there is something about these times that I’m not ready to lose

What are qualities you look for in a friendship?

The ability to listen to other opinions/points of view. Honesty, a sense of humour, understanding – of the times I will cancel just because I can’t leave my house or the times we hang out and I find myself with nothing to say. A sense of forgiveness, but also of apology. Patience. Openness.

How do you think people see you?

I think, based on what I’ve been told, that people see me as someone who has it all together. I have my own apartment, I somehow manage to keep myself and fish and couple of plants alive, I can not only dress myself, but do it well. I have a job, as well as my own personal work. I am active(ish). I even see my friends on a regular basis. I’m well rounded to most people. I am the person they come to for advice, the life they seek when they decide they’re ready to move out because it looks fun and easy.

How do you see yourself?

I see myself as a hard worker. I do as much as I can with grace and a smile and then the rest as well as I can. I think because I internalize and belittle how much work I do and how much I’ve been through it isn’t seen as much by other people. I see myself as erratic, and OCD, and controlling. But I also think I’m funny, and organized, and talented. I just try to see myself as plainly as I am, for all of the good and bad.

How would you like to be seen?

Well I mean who wouldn’t be good with being seen how people see me, you know? But realistically I wish that people didn’t idealize me or my life so much because it’s not how it meets the eye at all. Yes it is great, but it can also be terrifying and terrible and wrenching and debilitating. I don’t not suffer from anxiety because I seem to have it together you know? Being able to get up and do things doesn’t mean there aren’t days when I still can’t, and I think everyone should recognize that because that’s how reality is. It’s not shiny and perfect all the time and it never will be.

What do you consider your “flaws”? Why?

I think I’m too harsh, I am a huge advocate of tough love because it got me out of bed and for a run on the days I really felt I just wanted to eat cereal and watch netflix. And I think because of this I’m still too hard on myself without remembering the days I had to be gentle and understanding with myself. And I’m the same way with others, I have a tough time determining what needs to come when. I think I can also be self-absorbed, which comes from a place of trying to understand myself thus always thinking about myself. I’m very dramatic. I am hypocritical.

Do you think you’re someone others can/do look up to?

Well, yeah. I mean I’m pretty realistic, not perfect, not terrible. Sure I don’t (and haven’t had) a very healthy or steady romantic relationship in like… a few years, I didn’t go to post-secondary, I’ve never worked one place more than a year. But I’ve handled – so far – everything life has thrown at me, I’ve been able to get up time and time again knowing another day would come that would knock me down. I’ve been able to provide for myself and others, and there are also times that I haven’t been able to and I’ve had to be humble and ask for help. I think the important thing when looking up to anyone is not ignoring their flaws, noticing how that individual handles them. Do they hinder or do they learn?

What are you passionate about?

I’m passionate about what goes on inside. About individuals, about individuality. I love to see people blossom and do things that make them feel alive. I love love, in all forms. Self love, love for life, love for others. I want to help people reach and experience that, I want to help myself with that too. I think it’s important to know yourself before you can know your world – or more than knowing yourself and your world go hand in hand.

What are your pet peeves?

Small stupid things like when shampoo is left in the bathtub or my pants have been folded the wrong way or someone at work calls what I think is table 9 table 8. When people bite their nails down really short. when people are on their phones constantly while you’re in conversation with them.

If you could change something about yourself – internally or externally – what would it be? Why? 

I would probably change how stress and anxiety physically affects my body. My shoulders and back are tight and constantly crack. It’s incredibly unhealthy and hard to fix and I stress out about feeling stressed enough for this to have happened. I might change how anxious time makes me – although because of it I’m rarely late and can often get more done in an efficient time span.

What about yourself are you most proud of?

My perseverance.

What do you think the downfall of todays society will be?

I think people will actively stop trying to be and improve themselves, and will instead actively work towards being what society wants everybody to be. I think the downfall of society will be loosing individuality.

Do you think it is more important to try and make an impact in the world at large, or in your own world? Why?

In my own world. I think a ripple effect occurs. If I can change my world, and the people in my worlds world, then it can continue outwards. Karma kind of thing. The world at large is too large to tackle all at once. It takes a large movement, and I think that if I can spark that change and have it grow then it does better than trying to ignite the whole world.